was interviewed about his book that the u.s. naval academy in annapolis maryland. this interviews part of book tv college series and it's a little under 15 minutes. >> book tv is on location that the u.s. naval academy in annapolis maryland where we are interviewing some professors who are also authors. ..
>> "in buddha's company" thai soldiers in the vietnam war" what warded did thailand play? >> they were a very close ally during the vietnam war. people familiar would know that not only did thailand send troops to fight along the united states, but also served as a base for many aircraft for bombing missions over ho chi minh trail, over laos and at the time we had built seven their bases and developed a
port as well to facilitate the u.s. effort and also many soldiers went to bangkok and in terms of support thailand was the close ally. >>host: did they have soldiers? >> absolutely. they spent 37 -- cent to 37,000 soldiers to fight in vietnam also they sent smaller naval units but definitely fighting and working with the united states and south vietnamese. >>host: what about casualties? >> 500 + that died in south
vietnam while fighting the the it can't -- vietcong. it is important because of those who don't know 10 to dismiss them as the insulting term is america and mercenaries because we paid for the military part where but for four years thailand would carry out the war and what they saw as their war in south vietnam's. casualty's is what we should keep in mind. >>host: professor ruth
when did relations tel? they participated in the iraq war and world war ii. >> you can daypack to the famous example of the abraham lincoln war elephant troubles with the war but in the 20th century with the close u.s. ally -- ally disrupted partly but as soon as the cold war gels thailand comes as the strong u.s. ally and definitely a strong cold war ally as the component to the u.s. global strategy.
>>host: why do you call it "in buddha's company"? >> those who fought saw themselves says buddhist warriors. some as a logical someday tried to halt communism as a threat to the practice of values or religious tradition they saw buddhism and is under threat by a communism past to do with thailand as being the center of the intense tradition and many thai soldiers that fought they're took in both in front of what we call the enrolled buddha and many of them wore buddhist amulets
especially when they came in contact with soldiers with other countries as the defying simple and to rebuild the buddhist temples that were abandoned because of the fighting. and their service was informed by ideals and a lot of the veterans would invoke that mercy to describe why they were fighting and why they emphasize with the vietnamese people. even as i think about it, their attitude toward nature all of that had it route to two with. coming up with the title i
went to focus on their own image. >> what role does the keying play in thailand? if he said no would they have helped out? >> a great question. he is a and important part but only to promote thailand involvement in the war but to give his blessing to the departing soldiers in the middle of the discussions talking to johnson but when they did start recruiting soldiers but king made it clear he supported the venture and bid farewell and sponsored those celebrations
that marked the departure and showed a direct personal interest and visited wounded soldiers of the hospital when they came back. he presided over funeral ceremonies for them at the sponsored temples and from the beginning of the keying of thailand -- king would it still go forward if not? i don't know but it seems hard to imagines. >>host: what type of relationship does the u.s. military have? >> with the royal thai army and has not changed since the vietnam war we have a will whether -- regular exercises that they hold every year called cobra gold.
many of those steve -- train in the united states and have contact with the american counterparts here. there was a brief summary of relations at the war's conclusion the most of the time we had a close relationship. >>host: why is this important to note? >> thailand had the third largest army in vietnam for many of the years after the united states and south korea. thailand saw it as a direct threat to themselves their regional power but did not see it as america's war but it would impact them. trying to lube concentrate
on south vietnam but many was in laos. that also did service against the north vietnamese you cannot get the full view of the vietnam war without reading the regional perspectives and at the time in the united states is a focus on the exclusively american perspective while ignoring the vietnamese perspective but cambodian there are many of their national perspectives we should consider. i think about allies as well with united states have been foreign allies and through steadying interaction and
what were the elements to agree and disagree will help us to understand iraq war afghanistan -- of guinness dan. it is works like this that would help. >>host: "in buddha's company" thai soldiers in the vietnam war." . . day professor at the naval academy. thank you for your time. >>host: you may recognize him from a former book and he is back with a new book on the potomac river. where does it start and end? >> it starts in fairfax near
west virginia a tiny little circle and it then that point* look out when the river is 12 miles wide and in between there is history. it is where our nation in europe. it also has the nation's capital. >>host: people think about the white house and the potomac river. why is that? >> they think of washington d.c. are the national monument why do they think of of potomac river? >> for those in the area is seen as an obstacle as they drive over or under it i wanted to stress we have an incredible natural resource
there are very few levies we have bald eagles it is not solely clean but we work on that and by the way we get 90% of the drinking water comes out of the river. >> talk about the historical significance can you give us examples? >> mount vernon that washington known to because if you live there you got to pick the site of the nation's capital. now vernon is the most significant building on the potomac historic way. >> in your research i'm guessing you spent time on the river? >> i went to several hundred to visit to combine history with recreation.
i hit all the sites people could go to but also take a hike or a jump in a canoe to have a good time. it is an enormous recreation opportunity for people visiting the area. >> thank you so much. >> by the way i have a sequel coming out for february 2013. >>host: jeffrey macris permanent military professor at